Training Windsor Police Officers to use Naloxone a Shift in Culture

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All Windsor Police Service (WPS) officers will be trained to use Naloxone soon.

It's the drug used to counteract the effects of an opioid overdose and was previously only available to select Windsor police units.

Mayor Drew Dilkens says the decision was made to deploy the drug with all officers after the downtown aquatic centre was turned into an emergency homeless shelter — requiring around the clock police assistance.

Ward 3 Councillor Rino Bortolin tells The Afternoon says the move shows a shift in culture at police headquarters.

"The new executives should be applauded for a lot of the things that you're seeing," he says. "You're seeing more direct work with outreach workers."

Bortolin says new administrators like Chief Pam Mizuno continue to show they're willing to hear both sides of an issue.

"You're seeing things that are a little bit different because they realize and see it and they're not so rigid or entrenched in their ideological stance," says Bortolin. "They're actually doing things that are good and progressive for the community."

He expects the roll out to happen in less than a week.

"I think the directive will be crafted and sent out immediately. I think it will be approved and go through all of the administrative hurdles quite quickly," he added.

Naloxone had only been deployed in the Detention Units at WPS Headquarters and the Amherstburg Detachment and members assigned to both the Problem Oriented Policing (POP) Unit and the City Centre Patrol (CCP).

Training to use the drug can be completed in less than 30 minutes, according to the Ontario Harm Reduction Network.

— with files from AM800's Patty Handysides.